Brooke Shields Revisits (and Revises) Her 1989 Interview Cover Story with Andy Warhol

By
Illustrations by Richard Bernstein

Published March 11, 2019

On Second Thought offers iconic subjects the rare chance to revisit an interview from our archives, and reckon with the good and the bad of it. In this edition, Brooke Shields, the iconic model, actress, and proud French Lit major, revisits — and revises — her Interview cover story with Andy Warhol (and friends) from 1983, which hit newsstands the same month as her college orientation.

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AW: Brooke did a really great thing. I met her two years ago when she had just finished her movie. She was so well-known and was so nice to come to the Lighthouse Benefit for the Blind. 

BS: That was important to me. That was also a personal gratification, I guess. My mom and I are both involved in so many charities. It’s hard to pick and choose.

BROOKE SHIELDS: I re-read this entire interview until the wee hours of the night with a highlighter. That’s my stupid, dorky thing that I like to do, where I go and highlight everything and try to discover the psychology behind it. For example, it’s so fascinating I felt the need to say this thing about personal gratification.

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BS: Well, I got accepted. I applied to Vassar and Princeton, and I got accepted at both places. That’s when the real decision came. Before that I was definitely going to Vassar and I was definitely going to Princeton. But then when I got accepted, I thought, gosh, I’ve really got to make a decision. Academically, wherever I go I’m going to work very hard.

SHIELDS: My high school advisers told me that I would probably never get into Princeton. And I said, “Well, why won’t I get in?” And they said, ‘”Your SAT scores are good, but you don’t have enough extracurriculars.” And I said, “Are you kidding me? My whole life is extra-curricular.”

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MM: I think you should get teamed with a big star for your next movie. Who do you want to work with?

BS: I would love to make a film with Richard Gere. He has such an appeal.

SHIELDS: I don’t think I was making any kind of creative choice here. I just thought Richard Gere was really hot.

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MM: What’s your major going to be?

SHIELDS: I ended up majoring in French Lit — with honors.

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BS: On campus, in a dorm. I’ve put in my [requirements] — I sleep with the window open, I don’t smoke — all those things, so I’m going to get this bookworm for my roommate. 

AW: I think you have to be careful about not telling anyone that you’ll be living there.                             

BS: Well, I won’t know until I get there.

SHIELDS: Andy was really worried about me going to school. We had met countless times before, all of us at Studio 54. I was very, very young at the time, and I was excited by the people, not the fame or the experience. He and Keith [Haring] had a beauty and an innocence to them that we recognized in one another, because I wasn’t old enough to be jaded.

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BS: I’d like to do two things: a musical and a comedy. I would love to, either when I’m finished with school or before, do a very dramatic film that requires a lot of time comparable to — well, not a Sophie’s Choice, but the kind of acting that Meryl Streep was involved in, where I take an accent and have to work with it.

SHIELDS: We all want Meryl Streep’s talent, and I think it’s kind of sweet that I thought I could just decide to have it.